A regional panel for the Presbyterian Church (USA) is reviewing a decision by Baltimore churches to not discipline an openly homosexual minister for violating a rule that unmarried clergy must be chaste.
The Baltimore Presbytery cleared the Rev. Donald Stroud of the charge, but protests have prompted the Synod of the Mid-Atlantic in Richmond to investigate the procedures of the local decision.
"We felt that a special review was in order, but not because we concluded they did anything wrong," said the Rev. Barry Van Deventer, Synod executive.
"This is a review of the process, not a judicial review," he said of the seven-member panel that began meeting Monday. "Whether or not it has national implications remains to be seen."